How A San Antonio Motorcycle Accident Lawyer Can Help You With Your Claim
Masterful in their craft, the San Antonio motorcycle accident lawyers at The Patel Firm have assisted a myriad of individuals who were injured in motorcycle accidents due to the irresponsibility of others. These devoted lawyers put in all their efforts to ensure victims receive the compensation they rightly deserve for their injuries.
Have you been hurt in a motorcycle accident in San Antonio?
Connect with our San Antonio motorcycle accident lawyers at The Patel Firm today at 210-325-9990. We’re here to listen to your story. We don’t ask for any money upfront, and our initial conversation with you is free. If we believe we can support you and decide to manage your case, we’ll promptly start working to secure the compensation you deserve.Need Help? Let’s Chat.
Table of Contents
- San Antonio Motorcycle Accident Attorney
- What Causes Motorcycle Accidents in San Antonio?
- Motorcyclists often Sustain Serious Injuries in Accidents
- Why You Should Hire a San Antonio Motorcycle Accident Attorney
- How to Choose the Right Motorcycle Accident Attorney in San Antonio
- Schedule a Free Case Evaluation with a San Antonio Motorcycle Accident Lawyer Today
The National Safety Council (NSC) states that motorcycles make up only 3 percent of all registered vehicles in the United States and 0.6 percent of all vehicle miles traveled, but they account for 18 percent of all occupant fatalities and 4 percent of all occupant injuries. The Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT) reported that there was a 17 percent increase in Texas motorcycle fatalities in 2020 with a motorcyclist being killed in a crash on Texas roads every day (482 killed in the prior year) and motorcyclists accounting for 12 percent of all traffic fatalities statewide.
While motorcycles can certainly be thrilling vehicles for people to ride in Texas, there is no doubt about the dangers inherent to riding a motorcycle and people can suffer a wide range of possible injuries in all kinds of traffic accidents, even seemingly minor collisions. You are going to want to be sure that you do not delay in seeking the help of an experienced San Antonio motorcycle accident lawyer as soon as you are involved in any kind of motorcycle wreck because legal representation will be incredibly important in these types of cases.
Motorcycle crashes happen for various reasons, but most accidents are going to involve at least one party acting negligently. There are many different kinds of driver negligence that could be at play in a motorcycle accident, but some of the more common causes tend to include, without being limited to:
- Speeding — In June 2022, KVUE-TV reported that 34 percent of fatal crashes in Texas involved speed issues, and TxDOT reported that speed was the main reason for 163,756 traffic crashes resulting in 6,493 serious injuries and 1,532 fatalities in 2021. TxDOT statistics show that 15,316 rural crashes and 30,224 urban crashes involved speeding issues. Speeding is not always just a matter of people driving in excess of posted speed limits but also people who are driving too fast for certain conditions. Speeding often has the potential to cause a traffic accident because a person may be more likely to lose control of a motor vehicle, restraint systems may not be as effective, vehicles will take longer to stop, and greater speeds usually translate to more force upon collision. In June 2022, law enforcement agencies across the state began participating in “Operation Slowdown,” which was an effort to crack down on speeding drivers.
- Distracted driving — TxDOT reports that there were 93,560 total crashes involving distracted driving in 2021, including 380 fatal accidents causing 433 fatalities, 2,442 suspected serious injury crashes causing 2,935 suspected serious injuries, 10,880 suspected minor injury crashes causing 14,555 suspected minor injuries, 13,936 possible injury crashes causing 22,380 possible injuries, and 3,914 unknown severity crashes causing 14,909 unknown injuries. In Bexar County alone, there were 18,614 total crashes involving distracted driving, including 56 fatal accidents causing 57 fatalities, 230 suspected serious injury crashes causing 262 suspected serious injuries, 2,032 suspected minor injury crashes causing 2,633 suspected minor injuries, 2,914 possible injury crashes causing 4,830 possible injuries, and 1,348 unknown severity crashes causing 5,681 unknown injuries. As the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) notes, distracted driving usually takes one of three forms: visual distractions that take the eyes of drivers off the road, manual distractions that take a driver’s hands off the wheel, or cognitive distractions that take a driver’s mind off of driving.
- Drunk driving — TxDOT statistics show that 15,558 statewide crashes in Texas in 2021 involved drivers under the influence of alcohol and 3,430 involved drivers under the influence of drugs. Together, statewide alcohol and drug crashes caused 1,012 fatal crashes, 1,501 suspected serious injury crashes, 3,080 suspected minor injury crashes, 2,803 possible injury crashes, and 596 unknown severity crashes. Rural crashes in Texas in 2021 involved 4,897 drivers under the influence of alcohol and 1,196 drivers under the influence of drugs. Together, rural alcohol and drug crashes caused 538 fatal crashes, 676 suspected serious injury crashes, 1,007 suspected minor injury crashes, 729 possible injury crashes, and 128 unknown severity crashes. Urban crashes in Texas in 2021 involved 10,661 drivers under the influence of alcohol and 2,234 drivers under the influence of drugs. Together, urban alcohol and drug crashes caused 474 fatal crashes, 825 suspected serious injury crashes, 2,073 suspected minor injury crashes, 2,074 possible injury crashes, and 468 unknown severity crashes.
- Following too closely — According to TxDOT, 20,724 statewide crashes in Texas in 2021 involved drivers following too closely. Following too closely crashes caused 14 fatal crashes, 237 suspected serious injury crashes, 1,985 suspected minor injury crashes, 4,041 possible injury crashes, and 139 unknown severity crashes. Rural crashes in Texas in 2021 involved 3,234 drivers following too closely causing six fatal crashes, 62 suspected serious injury crashes, 268 suspected minor injury crashes, 405 possible injury crashes, and 32 unknown severity crashes. Urban crashes in Texas in 2021 involved 10,661 drivers following too closely, resulting in eight fatal crashes, 175 suspected serious injury crashes, 1,717 suspected minor injury crashes, 3,636 possible injury crashes, and 107 unknown severity crashes.
- Failure to yield — TxDOT statistics also show that 94,754 statewide crashes in Texas in 2021 involved some kind of failure to yield. These crashes caused 385 fatal crashes, 2,652 suspected serious injury crashes, 12,985 suspected minor injury crashes, 18,489 possible injury crashes, and 443 unknown severity crashes. Rural crashes in Texas in 2021 involved a driver’s failure to yield in 21,749 total accidents causing 201 fatal crashes, 984 suspected serious injury crashes, 2,774 suspected minor injury crashes, 3,154 possible injury crashes, and 121 unknown severity crashes. Urban crashes in Texas in 2021 involved 73,005 failure to yield cases, resulting in 184 fatal crashes, 1,668 suspected serious injury crashes, 10,211 suspected minor injury crashes, 15,335 possible injury crashes, and 322 unknown severity crashes.
Other common causes of motorcycle accidents may include dooring accidents (in which occupants of motor vehicles open doors into the pathways of motorcycles), reckless driving, lane splitting, inclement weather, dangerous road conditions, motorcycle defects, and left turns.
Motorcyclists are not afforded the same level of protection as occupants of other motor vehicles, so a person who is riding a motorcycle can often be thrown from their bike and suffer many additional injuries. Frequent types of severe injuries in motorcycle accident cases could include, but are not limited to:
- Broken Bones — Many motorcycle accidents cause broken bones or multiple-fracture injuries. Some fractures do not require significant time to heal, but other kinds of fractures may require surgeries or lead to long-term disabilities. A fracture is a bone break resulting from forces exceeding the strength of the osseous tissue in the bone. A fracture stemming from excessive external force will be a traumatic fracture. Serious fractures can require reconstructive surgery and the insertion of pins, plates, and screws that also require longer hospital stays, rehabilitation, and sometimes additional surgeries. Fractures could range in severity from minor inconveniences requiring very little medical intervention to severe and life-threatening injuries that may take months to years for a person to reach complete recovery. Most bone fractures are simple fractures or compound fractures. Simple fractures or closed fractures involve broken bones remaining within the body and do not penetrate the skin. Compound fractures or open fractures are broken bones that do penetrate through the skin and could expose the bone and deep tissues to the exterior environment. Compound fractures are thus far more serious than simple fractures because they could involve complications with deep infections caused by open wounds. Simple and compound fractures can also involve other types of fractures, such as comminuted fractures involve bones broken in at least two places; transverse fractures happen when a bone breaks perpendicular to its length, meaning the fracture pattern is a straight line running in the opposite direction of the bone; oblique fractures involve bones breaking at angles; spiral fractures happen when a bone is broken with a twisting motion, creating a fracture line wrapping around the bone and looking like a corkscrew; and avulsion fractures involve small pieces of bones tearing off from the main bones because of application of extreme force to ligaments or tendons. In many construction accidents, injured workers suffer more than just a single broken bone, and fractures can prevent them from returning to work for months or even years. Severe fractures can lead to a recovery period that may be a very long and painful process requiring physical therapy, rehabilitation, and additional surgeries. In some cases, these injuries can be so severe that a victim is unable to return to work in any capacity, leading to immense financial hardship.
- Serious Soft Tissue Injuries — Soft tissue injuries involve trauma to muscles, tendons, or ligaments. The most common kinds of soft tissue injuries often include anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) knee injuries, bursitis affecting the bursae, which is the small, fluid-filled sac cushioning the bones, tendons, and muscles surrounding your joints, sprains, tendinitis, contusions, and concussions.
- Traumatic Brain Injuries — A TBI is an acquired brain injury occurring when sudden trauma causes damage to the brain. A TBI could be the result of a person’s head suddenly and violently hitting an object, or an object piercing their skull and entering brain tissue. Symptoms of TBIs can be mild, moderate, or severe, depending on the extent of damage to the brain. People with mild TBIs may remain conscious or experience a loss of consciousness for only a few seconds or minutes, but other symptoms of mild TBI could include headaches, confusion, lightheadedness, dizziness, blurred vision or tired eyes, ringing in the ears, bad taste in the mouth, fatigue or lethargy, behavioral or mood changes, changes in sleep patterns, and trouble with memory, concentration, attention, or thinking. People with moderate or severe TBIs may show the same symptoms, but could also have headaches which get worse or do not go away, suffer from repeated vomiting or nausea, convulsions or seizures, have an inability to awaken from sleep, suffer dilation of one or both pupils in the eyes, weakness or numbness in the extremities, slurred speech, loss of coordination, and increased confusion, restlessness, or agitation. About half of severely head-injured TBI patients require surgery to remove or repair hematomas (ruptured blood vessels) or contusions (bruised brain tissue). Common disabilities associated with TBI include problems with cognition (thinking, memory, and reasoning), sensory processing (sight, hearing, touch, taste, and smell), communication (expression and understanding), and behavior or mental health (depression, anxiety, personality changes, aggression, acting out, and social inappropriateness). Some cases can also involve intracranial hematoma (ICH), which involves several types of blood clots in or around the brain. Different types of ICH are classified based on their location in the brain, and the types can range from mild head injuries to very serious and potentially life-threatening injuries, and different types of ICH include epidural hematoma, which occurs when a blood clot forms underneath the skull but on top of the dura, the covering that surrounds the brain; subdural hematoma, which occurs when a blood clot forms underneath the skull and underneath the dura, but outside of the brain; contusions or intracerebral hematoma, which is a bruise to the brain itself causing bleeding and swelling inside of the brain around the area where the head was struck; and diffuse axonal injuries (DAIs), which are usually caused by shaking of the brain back and forth.
- Traumatic Amputations — The National Library of Medicine states that traumatic amputations remain common injuries and many people can require amputations to save their lives. Traumatic amputation often involves a person’s finger, toe, arm, or leg. Body parts may be reattached in some cases.
- Spinal Cord Injuries — An injury to the spinal cord will involve damage to the bundle of cells and nerves that send and receive signals from the brain to and from the rest of the body. These injuries could be the result of direct injuries to the spinal cord itself or from damage to the tissue and bones (vertebrae) surrounding the spinal cord. Damage could result in temporary or permanent changes in sensation, movement, strength, and body functions below the site of an injury. An incomplete spinal cord injury involves a spinal cord still being able to transmit messages to and from the brain to the rest of the body, but complete spinal cord injuries have no nerve communication and motor function (voluntary movement) below the site where the trauma occurred. Spinal cord injuries may cause symptoms such as numbness, tingling, or a loss of or changes in sensation in the hands and feet, paralysis, weakness or inability to move any part of the body, pain or pressure in the head, neck, or back, loss of movement, loss of bladder and bowel control, unnatural positions of the spine or head, difficulty breathing, problems walking, and changes in sexual function.
Other common kinds of injuries could include concussions, crush injuries, closed head injuries, back injuries, knee injuries, leg injuries, neck injuries, arm injuries, internal organ injuries, skull fractures, permanent nerve injuries, amputations, paralysis, and wrongful death.
You will want to have The Patel Firm PLLC on your side as soon as possible after a motorcycle accident because the insurance company for the other driver involved in your accident will probably be trying to contact you not long after your crash. You need to be extremely cautious about how you deal with another party’s insurer because insurance companies often claim they need people to make recorded statements before they can process any kind of financial compensation, but you should never provide a statement without a lawyer.
Many people who are confident their accidents were the fault of another driver believe they can handle their own settlement negotiations, and insurance companies often encourage this line of thinking because they know that a person representing themselves will be much more likely to accept a lackluster offer than they would be with legal counsel. Many people who work with lawyers obtain more compensation than they would on their own.
A motorcycle accident lawyer is going to be able to fully investigate your accident and secure all of the evidence you need to prove another party was at fault for your crash. They can then represent you in any court appearances relating to your case.
Any person who is seeking legal representation for a motorcycle accident case should be sure to hire a lawyer who specifically has motorcycle accident experience. You should ask an attorney how many of these types of cases they have recently handled and what the results were in those cases.
You should also be sure that your lawyer is going to communicate with you throughout your case, so you will want to be sure that you have the ability to speak to your attorney at any time. Be sure that you are going to get assistance with all of the different bills you are now facing because of your motorcycle crash.
If you suffered serious injuries or your loved one was killed in a motorcycle accident in the greater San Antonio area, it is going to be very important that you not delay in getting legal help with your case. The Patel Firm PLLC is ready and able to provide the assistance you need.
Our firm can handle your case on a contingency fee basis, which will mean that you do not pay us anything if we do not get you a settlement or jury award. Call 210-325-9990 or contact us online to take advantage of a free consultation with our San Antonio motorcycle accident attorney.
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